Senator Diane Allen (R-Burlington) was pinned as an “Angel in Adoption” at a ceremony held Tuesday in Washington D.C. to honor her efforts to advance the rights of adopted children across the State of New Jersey.
The Congressional Coalition on Adoption chose to honor Senator Allen for legislation she sponsored (S-873) to bring fundamental, responsible changes to the way adoptees access birth records in New Jersey. The bill was signed into law in May of 2014 after more than a decade of advocacy by Senator Allen. Senator Allen was among nominees nationwide who were honored for creating a national impact in the field of adoption by advocating for children living in adoptive and foster homes. Senator Allen was nominated by Congressman Tom MacArthur.
“I am honored to be recognized for my work to end the injustices and discrimination faced by adoptees across New Jersey,” Senator Allen said. “For 17 years, I fought to pass legislation recognizing that adoptees deserve the same access to vital information many of us take for granted.
“I offer my heart-felt thanks to the Congressional Coalition and Congressman Tom MacArthur for acknowledging this important effort to enrich the lives of countless adoptees and their families who call New Jersey home,” Senator Allen added.
The passage of S-873 ended the decades-long debate on easing the costly and burdensome hurdles to accessing birth records, giving adoptees access to invaluable medical information and family histories. The law includes specific provisions to honor the privacy requests made by birth parents that are faced with the delicate and profound decision to find a loving home for their child.
Under the law, adoptees will finally be able to obtain an original birth certificate without involvement from the courts beginning in 2017.
— Senator Diane Allen (@dianeallennj) October 6, 2015